What type of floor tile should I choose for my new bathroom?
When you visit a tile showroom you may be overwhelmed by the countless options available for your bathroom floor. Such terms as porcelain, ceramic and natural stone will be thrown around but what exactly are they? Here we explain these terms and how they wear on a bathroom floor.
If you're after a product for your floor that is outstanding in durability and quality and will last the distance, porcelain is your ‘go to’ tile. Porcelain tiles have been fired up to 1200 degrees celsius making them extremely strong, impervious to moisture and resistant to extreme heat or cold. You will never have to seal a glazed porcelain tile and it can be cleaned with most household products. One of the most exciting features about porcelain tile of recent years is how far digital ink technology has advanced allowing porcelain to perfectly simulate natural products such as timber, marble, terrazzo, concrete and bluestone with ease. The resemblance is as impressive as it is authentic and in most cases, you’d be hard pressed telling the difference between the man-made product and the real thing.
Porcelain Tile- Cosi Collection
Porcelain Tile- Fraction Collection
Porcelain Tile- Montserrat Collection
Ceramic tile is equally as hard working as its porcelain counterpart, the main difference being that ceramic is fired at a lower temperature. This can make the product less durable and more prone to scratching if care is not taken. For this reason it is not recommended for floors in high traffic areas such as public spaces but is more than suitable in an average family bathroom where everyday ‘wear and tear’ is not excessive.
Ceramic Tile- Mosque Collection
Ceramic Tile- Twilight Collection
NATURAL STONE TILE
There’s something very special about the characteristic patterns and tonal variation of natural stone tiles. Marble, terrazzo, concrete and bluestone tiles exude an opulent look and feel that is hard to beat. But before you fall in love with this product there are some important maintenance facts you should know. All natural stone is porous meaning it has microscopic pores on its surface. When installing natural stone on floors and especially in ‘wet’ areas, these pores need to be treated with a stone sealer to help prevent staining, etching and wearing. The sealing process is not a one off thing, instead it is a job that needs to be done regularly depending on how much traffic the stone has received. This may seem like a daunting exercise but it’s quite simple and can easily be a DYI project on the weekend. First clean your tiles with a mild product, apply the sealer with an applicator and then leave to dry. Ensure your bathroom is well ventilated during the process. The effort of sealing may well be worth the joy and beauty you receive from these impressive tiles on an everyday basis. Sealers can be purchased at your tile supplier or hardware store.
Handmade tiles offer a style that is quite different to any other tile available. The characteristic features that are achieved during the baking process are truly amazing. Imperfect edges, glaze variation, interesting patterns and colours that contrast from tile to tile are handmade trademarks that highlight their uniqueness and ultimate sense of beauty. This simply cannot be achieved with a man made product.
Like natural stone, if your handmade product does not have a glaze on its surface it will need to be sealed for your bathroom floor.
Handmade Tile- Custom Di Lusso Collection
Handmade Tile- Di Lusso Collection
As you can see the benefits of a porcelain tile outweigh most other tile products and is a popular choice for floors but with so many other beautiful options available, the decision will ultimately come down to choosing a product that perfectly suits your sense of style, design and personality.